Columbus Police Department has utilized police dogs for over 30 years. The department’s first canine team was Jim Norris and a German Shepherd named Baron. They began patrolling the streets of Columbus in April 1975. Since then, the use of dogs has proved to be an important asset to the department in assisting officers in many areas. Currently the department has three canine teams.
Handlers are responsible for taking care of the canine assigned to them. The canine teams train during their shift and two workdays a month. This is done to maintain the dog’s high level of proficiency and to meet legal requirements. The canine teams are on call 24 hours a day to respond to any incident where the dog may be able to assist. These call-outs are not limited to just the Columbus Police Department. Over the years, CPD K-9 teams have assisted many other departments who are not fortunate enough to have police canines.
Police dogs have evolved over the years and will continue to do so well into the future. Certainly they have proved to be a very important tool for the Columbus Police Department in providing a safe community.